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Sunday, July 23, 2017

Baseball

Cougars surrender leads, fall twice to Bulls


The Cougars are now 28-15 after going just 1-2 against the University of South Florida Bulls. | Ajani Stewart/The Cougar

The Cougars’ momentum continued to slow over the weekend when the team dropped two out of three games to the No. 22 ranked University of South Florida Bulls. The pair of losses continues a slump that has seen baseball go just 5-7 in its last 12 games.

After finding themselves alone atop the American Athletic Conference standings for portions of the season, the Cougars now sit in a five-way tie for first place with just nine league games remaining. At 9-6 against conference foes, the team will play six games against universities that are in the tie against the Cougars.

Friday’s tilt from Tampa, Florida got the weekend off to a quick start when baseball downed the Bulls 7-3.

Sophomore right-handed pitcher Mitch Ullom was stellar, throwing eight innings of two-hit baseball and allowing just two earned runs. Ullom earned a co-team-leading sixth win of the season in an impressive second year with the Cougars.

Despite jumping out to an early 4-0 lead after two innings on Saturday, the Cougars allowed seven unanswered runs to the Bulls, and in the end, they fell 7-4. Baseball continued the trend of squandered leads on Sunday when they lost 5-4 despite taking a 4-1 advantage into the bottom of the seventh inning.

Even with the team in a slump, junior shortstop Jake Scheiner continues to swing a hot bat. Scheiner leads the team in nearly every hitting category including .365 average, 13 home runs and 42 RBI.

Overall, the team finished the week just 1-3 and will try to return to form with a new slate of games this week.

The Cougars will turn their focus to the Sam Houston State University Bearkats for a Tuesday night matchup from Huntsville. The Bearkats are 29-15 this season, including a 2-0 mark against the Cougars.

First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at Don Sanders Stadium.

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